Running a medical practice, even in small clinics, can be exhausting. Everyone requires a little assistance from time to time. We’ve all had days when we wish someone else would assist us with administrative responsibilities that have piled up. The answer is straightforward: hire virtual medical assistants.
We want someone who knows the ins and outs of the healthcare profession. Someone who understands the terminologies, who is an expert in managing the front office, and who ultimately can make our lives easier while providing assistance to our patients.
Important Questions to Ask Your Medical Virtual Assistant to Know if They Are Qualified
As a medical practitioner, it is vital to learn more about your virtual medical assistant’s experience in the healthcare industry. It can help you better understand what they can contribute to you and why they are a good fit for your practice.
Establishing a personal relationship is important before selecting your virtual assistant (VA). It enables you to keep a good working relationship with them while gaining insight into what inspires and motivates them professionally. Before you make a decision, you should ask the right questions.
“Do You Have Any Experience in My Area of Expertise?”
This interview question will help you understand who they are and how skilled they are at their job. You can ask about their experiences and what they did in each of their previous roles.
“What Are Your Key Strengths?”
Knowing their key strengths helps you understand your VA’s limitations. For example, ask them about their most vital and weakest skills to see if they fit the task you want to assign them. You’ll better understand the areas they excel at and the areas they need to improve on.
“Can You Handle More Than Basic Administrative Tasks?”
If you own a business, you’re always looking for employees with more than basic skills. Ask them if they are willing to go beyond administrative tasks to see if they can handle more. You’ll never know how far their capabilities extend beyond handling medical transcription, managing patients’ medical records, and setting appointment reminders.
“Where Are You Located?”
Sometimes, they may work in a different time zone. Asking this question will ensure that they are available to work during the working hours you set.
“How Much is Your Rate?”
Their rate allows you to estimate how much money you’ll need to set aside for the position to ensure you have enough funds. Setting a salary expectation can be the most important factor, especially if you want to keep the cost of hiring one to a reasonable amount.
“What Kinds of Projects Have You Previously Worked on?”
If the virtual assistant has notable experience and has consistently done an excellent job, you can probably trust them with any new project. However, if your VA has never worked on a project related to what you’re currently working on, it does not mean they are unqualified. However, expect them to start small and constantly improve on their tasks.
“How Long Will You Be Working with My Company?”
If you want someone to stay with you in the long run, they must commit to working based on their contract throughout their employment. If they’ve only agreed to do one project, they’re unlikely to stay long enough to be truly valuable to your company.
“What is Your Availability?”
As a doctor, time is precious. You have limited hours in the day and lots of patients to see, so any time you can save is valuable. A virtual medical assistant will help you achieve this by eliminating some of the most time-consuming tasks associated with your job.
What Are the Main Qualities You Need to Look for in a Medical Virtual Assistant?
Several characteristics make a great medical virtual assistant, but the most important is ethics. They need to maintain a professional demeanor while simultaneously being personable and calm.
This quality must be innate in a person’s character rather than something that can be taught or learnt. For any relationship between your virtual assistant and patient to function successfully, it would be preferable if the virtual medical assistant is already ethical.
They must put themselves in the patient’s shoes and understand why each patient needs medical attention. Aside from being ethical, it’s important to find a medical virtual assistant who has these characteristics:
Though they may be some of the most qualified people, you need to rely on them to keep you updated on work progress to ensure your business runs smoothly. Since your VA will most likely be working remotely, they must exemplify responsibility, productivity, and independence to complete tasks.
2. Good Communicator
Ensure that your VA is comfortable navigating various communication channels on any platform, such as emails, project management software, or text messaging. Inadequate communication is why misunderstandings happen, which can eventually cause delays, extra costs, and conflicts with patients.
A resourceful VA can develop solutions independently without being told what they must do and accomplish. They also can think outside the box when it comes to problem-solving without needing constant supervision.
Trust is a two-way street when it comes to a remote working relationship. Your virtual medical assistant should be upfront about any issues or delays preventing them from completing the work on time. It would be helpful if you were open and honest with them about your needs and expectations.
To build trust, you should ask your VA for feedback on what works well for her and what doesn’t. If there is a need for clarification about your expectations, there will always be problems later on when something unexpectedly goes wrong because neither party communicates effectively.
When you’re dealing with a tough situation, a good medical virtual assistant should be able to keep their head up and stay upbeat. They can help you stay strong when facing challenges and lift your spirits when things get rough.
A consistent medical virtual assistant will ensure that your business practices run smoothly. You can be confident that your patients are being cared for while you are away from the office or busy with other patients.
Consistency helps patients feel like their doctors control their treatment, even if they aren’t in the same room. The more consistent they are with your patients, the more they’ll trust you.
Patients can be difficult when they don’t understand the nature of their illness or how to manage it. They may be frustrated, confused, and overwhelmed as well. In these cases, a virtual medical assistant should be able to help them find the answers they need without becoming frustrated or impatient and passing on any negativity and stress to the patient.
8. “Malasakit,” or Caring for Others
In Phoenix Virtual Solutions, VAs show the unique Filipino trait of “malasakit,” or caring for others, and emphasize making each patient feel like they are the number one priority, regardless of the hectic workload or the number of patients.
The Long-Term Benefits of Hiring Medical Virtual Assistants
Hiring medical assistants is a cost-effective, convenient solution for managing administrative tasks, freeing up your time to focus even further on patient care. There are a lot of ways a virtual assistant can help you.
Save More Time
Most healthcare providers find themselves short on time. Hiring virtual medical assistants can help you with menial tasks that aren’t necessarily part of your core operations, like handling insurance claims or scheduling appointments.
When you hire a virtual medical assistant, you can effectively delegate these tasks, freeing up your team’s time to focus on higher-priority duties.
Increase Organizational Productivity
Hiring a virtual medical assistant can help increase organizational productivity by reducing the time it takes to complete administrative tasks and ensuring timely compliance. It means virtual assistants can spend more time doing administrative or clerical duties, improving the overall productivity of the team and the business as well.
VAs can be more efficient than their in-person counterparts, as it minimizes the need to take longer breaks. They also have fewer distractions because their working environment won’t distract them from their tasks, unlike in the typical work setting.
Improve Client Relations
Patients are usually intimidated by overcrowding. They may be hesitant to openly discuss their problems in front of others if they are overwhelmed by the clinic’s environment. You can talk with your patients one-on-one while your virtual assistant is reporting to you remotely. It will significantly enhance the patient’s overall experience.
Decrease in Employee Turnover
The costs of replacing an employee with a bad hire can be as much as three times higher than replacing one with a good one. Companies in this industry should do everything possible to minimize turnover rates.
One way to reach this goal is to choose the best pool of candidates first. Working with an experienced team of professionals who understand your client’s needs makes it much easier to keep enthusiastic employees about their jobs and, thus, less likely to leave.
The Frequently Asked Questions on How to be a Virtual Medical Assistant
“How to Start Your Career as a Virtual Medical Assistant?”
Research the Role of a Medical Virtual Assistant
Before applying for a virtual medical assistant position, it’s important to research it first. Find out what duties and skills are needed to succeed as a virtual assistant.
Look for Courses Offering a Certification in Medical Billing or Coding
Even though it’s not a requirement, many virtual medical assistants have a medical background. To increase your chances of landing a job, many online programs offer these certifications that can be completed in six to eight weeks.
In most cases, understanding other best practices in the medical field and having HIPAA compliance training certifications can help you in getting hired. The goal is to ensure that you have a basic idea of medical terminology and procedures to help you succeed.
Embrace Independent Working
One of the enjoyable perks of working as a virtual medical assistant is the ability to work from home and set your schedule. It is an excellent way to learn how to effectively manage your time and workload.
Of course, working independently also comes with challenges, but if you’re self-motivated, you can make it work. Being able to adjust to this setup can be helpful to set some structure for yourself. Here are some best practices you can follow:
- Taking breaks at specific times
- Scheduling workflow days in advance
- Creating an environment where it’s easy to focus on work
- Familiarizing yourself with the latest software and applications
- Researching the latest trends in the medical industry
Reach Out to Medical Offices
Now that you have the skills and viewpoint of medical offices in pursuit of a virtual assistant, it’s time to make connections and start your job search. Reaching out to medical offices or clinics is the best way to find work as a virtual medical assistant. For an effective job search, include a cover letter and your updated resume in your application.
“Do Virtual Medical Assistants Make More Money Than Nurses?”
Nurses and virtual medical assistants are in high demand all over the world. It’s not always essential to have a medical background for a virtual medical assistant but it greatly helps you when handling patient records and most especially, communicating with doctors.
But there are job positions for medical virtual assistants that require registered nurses or licensed practical nurses because of specialized roles, not just administrative and customer service support roles.
Overall, virtual medical assistants and nurses can earn the same amount. However, this is not a given because it also depends on things like the business they work for, what their employment entails, and the services they offer.
What Can You Do Once You Successfully Hire a Virtual Medical Assistant?
“How Can You Invest in Your Medical Virtual Assistant?”
Build Their Confidence
To instill more confidence in them, let your virtual medical assistant become familiar with how your business is handled. It contains information on your business and personal practices. They can confidently predict what will happen next based on their comprehension of your business procedures and objectives, making these two areas crucial to consider.
Personalize Your Virtual Assistant
Since VAs understand that each client is unique, it is vital that training be provided in the industry they will be assigned to. They may be assigned to work on general tasks, but it is easier to narrow down the duties you expect them to accomplish.
Invest your time by choosing Phoenix Virtual Solutions as your premier offshore outsourcing provider. Their Filipino virtual assistants are already HIPAA-trained and can quickly understand how they can help you with all the patient management tasks and better serve you and your day-to-day tasks.
Streamline Their Tasks
Create emails and documents that can be used as templates to help your virtual medical assistants with their work. If you are working with a team, it is good to create a template that each member of the team may use to remember and arrange the relevant information.
Medical facility management is never easy. You frequently want assistance keeping track of everything due to the numerous moving pieces and intricate operations. One issue you may run into is the cost of expanding your office or recruiting more employees. In addition, you must make sure that your workforce is properly trained and operating at maximum efficiency. Look no further than Phoenix Virtual Solutions if you want the greatest virtual medical assistants working for you.
The potential for your clinic to grow is right there, waiting for you to take hold of it. All you need is a VA to help you set up systems that bring more clients to your clinic. Hiring a virtual assistant can be one of the best investments you can make now! Reach out to Phoenix Virtual Solutions and hire a virtual medical assistant today!